Semaphore 7, 2009 Portugal

This wine sure does go pretty well with the blueberries I’m eating for lunch.  No joke.  Surely I will dig up something more substantial a little later, but for now it’s wine and blueberries.  It feels like morning to me, even though it’s 1pm.  So really this is breakfast.  Wine for breakfast?  it’s the new coffee.

Okay, maybe not.  And I’m not really drinking, I’m merely tasting.  So what’s the deal with this wine?  Welllll…. it’s made out of a bunch of grapes you’ve probably not heard of, but I’ll tell you anyway:  a blend of Alicante Bouschet, Aragones, and Trincadeira.  Portugal, Portugal.  They just cannot call a grape something we ‘Murricans can remember.  They sure are a stubborn bunch.  Don’t they know that America is the center of the universe??  And that everything revolves around us?

I’m kidding, in case that sarcasm went over any of your heads.  I actually really appreciate the fact that this wine is true to from whence it came.  I know of a particular bottle of Primitivo that goes as far as to print Zinfandel in parentheses under the word Primitivo on the bottle.  I bet it took a whole team of marketing experts to decide on that one.  “Study groups have shown that sales increase drastically when there is a recognizable word on the label!”  Okay, so I made that up.  But I’m sure it’s not far from the truth.  And it’s all about the sales quota, isn’t it?

Well, no.  Not for this wine.  This wine is just going to be who it is.  And if you are unfamiliar with the grapes?  Google them!  That’s what I did.  Educate yourself.  You might learn a thing or two, and have a little fun.  And impress your friends.  So here’s what I learned; Aragones is Tempranillo.  It’s known as Aragones/Aragonez in one part of Portugal.  It’s known as Tinta Roriz in another part of Portugal.  Alicante Bouschet is a cross between Petit Bouschet and Grenache.  Grenache!  There’s a familiar word.  I like Grenache.  And if you do too, you will probably like this wine.

Okay, that was a LOT of wine-nerding for this post.  I think I’ve filled the quota for today.  Let’s move on to experiential things like how it tastes, smells, and behaves!  It’s mostly black fruit n’ flowers.  Since Portugal is best known for port, a lot of times with Portugese reds I get more hints of dried raisins (what other kind of raisin is there?), prunes, plums, blackberries and dried currants.   The Semaphore is young and fresh, so it offers a bit more ripeness and juiciness than many of its cousins and step-siblings might.  There’s also a really nice undercurrent of violets and maybe a little jasmine, followed by some exotic spices.  All in all, an interesting and fun to drink little bottle.

And the best part?  It’s inexpensive!  Retails for $11!  You can grab a bottle and be on your way, or you can sip on a glass during dinner at Cellar on Greene, where it’s on by the glass.  OR if you really wanted to be cool, you could ask for this in your next Mystery Case purchase!  Yes, it’s available as a Mystery Case pick.  Quite a few of you picked it the last two weeks, so hopefully you liked it!  That’s all I got time for today, so happy drinking!


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